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Lynn Crosbie On Jian Ghomeshi: Author Writes 'Big Ears Teddy' Poem About Radio Host

10/31/2014 12:10 EDT | Updated 10/31/2014 12:59 EDT
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Lynn Crosbie, the Canadian poet, author and cultural critic, has written a poem entitled "Big Ears Teddy" to address her own feelings about the Jian Ghomeshi scandal, and it's struck a chord with many Canadians.

Crosbie, who has been interviewed by Ghomeshi, the embattled ex-CBC radio host, in the past, published a 24-line poem about him Thursday night. She used the name of Ghomeshi's stuffed animal that he allegedly turned to the wall before assaulting women as her title. Ghomeshi had been quoted in the past as saying that the teddy played an important role in helping him with his general anxiety disorder.

In rich, succinct, first-person language, Crosbie manages to look at the many sides of this story, bringing together so much of what is gripping Canadians about this incident. She describes her own interactions with Ghomeshi, her sympathy about his recently departed father, and the positive impression that so many people who listened to him on the radio shared.

She then goes on to write about what appears to be her own experience with sexual assault when she was 17:

Of talking to you two summers ago

And listening to the tape just now,

with a high fever and a sick father

And your father dead.

I listen to myself talk over you and cringe: you were so nice!

...

When I was 17, my boyfriend, Mark Berry, hit and punched me;

He tried to break my arm and kicked me; forced me to have sex

Through coercion so it doesn’t count

so it doesn’t count so it doesn’t count so it doesn’t count so it doesn’t count

so it doesn’t count

I am managing to feel sad for you, not him,

As another girl may feel about Mark, not you

Social media has been awash this week in stories from women everywhere sharing their own stories of assault, via powerful hashtags like #IBelieveThem and #BeenRapedNeverReported.

You can read Crosbie's entire poem at her website here, or if the site is still down (as it has been for many hours due to a high volume of traffic), read the cached version here.


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